31 March 2017 | MartinHafer
A sad film with a happy ending...at least for Larry!
The fact that "Larry" is supposed to be based on the life of a real person makes this story tragic. Larry has lived his whole life in a wretched and substandard facility for the developmentally disabled. When the awfulness of the place is discovered, it's closed and Larry is transferred to a state hospital...where his social worker (Tyne Daly) comes to realize he might not, in fact, be mentally challenged. He sure acts like he is...but she comes to realize that growing up among these sorts of folks, he naturally learned to fit in with them. But first she has to convince the doctor in charge that Larry is different and in need of special therapy. Much of the film shows her and Larry working together to bring him up to normal functioning level.
The film is extraordinary and very well made. Frederic Forrest in the title role is excellent and the film is quite bittersweet...sad because of all the lost time yet filled with hope for the future. It's also handled very sensitively, though times have changed and many of the terms used today are no longer acceptable to many, such as 'mental retardation'. Bear with it...that IS how they talked back in the day. Well worth seeing.